I found out a few months ago that I was pregnant with my fourth boy. The sonogram tech looked at the other three tumbling around the exam room and asked, “So, I am guessing you are hoping it will be a girl?” “Yes,” I said, “I’d really like a little pink to break all this up.”
It was a little early for an official anatomy ultrasound, so the sonogram tech said she’d try to get a picture but it might not be possible. All of us could tell right away when she had the sonogram in the right spot; the two nurses tried to act like they couldn’t tell, but trying to lie while holding back laughter is a little tricky.
“Oh well,” I said. “At least I have everything I need.” Which is the absolute truth. I have boxes and boxes of boy clothes and shoes, all boy-colored blankets and burp clothes, car seat, strollers, swing, bumbo seat, etc., etc., etc. All the things to keep a small human alive and gender coordinated to boot.
Not many people have baby registries past one or two kids, but there are always kind and generous people who want to give gifts to new babies and new moms. I was the same way when new nephews or nieces were born into our family and loved picking out adorable onesies and sleepers with clever sayings and cute colors on them. I figured the mama would be happy for a new, clean outfit, right?
I am now (hopefully, please say that I am!) in the experienced mama club, and I have to sigh a little bit when a new 0-3 month onesie comes my way. I hate to sound ungrateful or not thankful for someone spending time and money to buy an outfit for my kid, but let me show you — I have so much already!
To get through all the 0-3 month clothes collected from my three boys and my nephew who lives close by, I’d have to change him 3-4 times a day. Thanks to clockwork nursing and the pooping of a newborn, changing often sometimes happens, but I wouldn’t want to have to go through that trouble to get him through the whole load of clothes for no reason other than to snap a picture and send it to the giver.
I approached this pregnancy in a new and liberating fashion.
I knew I hardly had to buy anything for the baby, so I started collecting a list of what I would want instead. Because, let’s face it: That baby gets a lot more love than the mama does after birth, and I am ready for a little of the attention to come my way too.
If you have an experienced or even a first-time mama on the horizon and are searching for the perfect gift that she will love, take a glance through my Mom Only Registry. Trust me, mama wants some gifts too!
Soma Intimates (gift card)
Trying to guess bust size after baby, nursing or not, is impossible. Women’s bodies change with every pregnancy and almost every day after delivery, until a few weeks postpartum. I panicked with my first when my midwife said I was going into labor four weeks early and made a quick Target run for a nursing bra…and I had no clue what size to get, so I went with BIG. Target has been my preference for nursing bras ever since because they are cheap and those bras get tugged, squirted, leaked on and worn out fast. I haven’t invested in a good quality nursing bra for the last three babies, but I really want to this time around. It’d be nice to walk around not smelling like a dairy farm and looking similarly too. Soma Intimates has wonderful staff (here in Chattanooga for sure!) who help with sizing and find out what you want out of your undergarments, whether it’s comfort, beauty, durability, etc. I have been waiting since our Mom’s Night Out to be able to go back after baby and enjoy having someone waiting on me!
When pregnant with my first, some sweet older ladies with whom I attended a weekly class threw me a little shower. One of them gifted me this very floral, very large, very old fashioned nightgown. I had a giggle and shoved it away with the rest of the baby presents. But I lived in that nightgown for the first few weeks with each of my boys. It was so roomy for my still protruding belly, had buttons down the front for easy nursing, and was long enough to wear around the house and not feel subconscious, ’cause there is nothing else like recovering from birth to kill the desire to look attractive. I loved the nightgown but it had to die after the third baby, so I am looking for a super comfy PJ set for the next. These look perfect for post baby recovery!
Seriously, PUT DOWN THAT ONESIE! This is what she wants. You could spend $40 on a vintage airplane patterned layette set which will get pooped on in ten minutes, or you could buy her an hour of peace and quiet with someone getting rid of the tension of carrying a baby for eight months. It might not be an Instagram-worthy post that she’ll tag you in a few months later, but she will remember it for a very long time, and know you thought about her. Good Fortune Soap and Spa has a great deal right now, and their prenatal massage specialist is said to be the best!
Again, the ultimate mom-to-be present. I have an appointment planned for a couple weeks before I am due because there is something very comforting about having pretty toes while I am in the very uncomfortable stirrup position with five people I hardly know in between my feet. They always offer the mirror and I always refuse. If my toes look okay however, I concentrate on them and pretend that is what everyone else is looking at too. Another option is to create a post-baby spa kit with sugar scrubs, buttery lotion and quality nail polish. Pretty soon that baby belly won’t be in the way and she can bend over again!
After a few weeks of recovery, I start coming out of the post baby fog and wonder if I still have a brain. Who are we at war with now? What scandal happened in politics while I was away? There was a new iOS update? Audio books are about the only way I can get through a book with a newborn. The app saves my spot for me, and a curious toddler can’t eat my bookmark while I am away. Plus, a subscription gives you a free book every month, so the new mama keeps getting gifts month after month!
Maybe this doesn’t apply to all moms, but I hate walking around on my hardwoods with bare feet. Too many matchbox cars, sticky Cheerios, spilled water, and used stickers that I have to clean off before I get into bed. I’d rather put on slippers and stay comfy and free of the dirt. My favorite type of slippers are LL Bean’s Wicked Good Slippers, but they are pretty hot in the summer. I haven’t tried the flip-flop style but I know it has to be comfortable. Don’t buy those size 1 Nike’s for the baby that will fall off every two seconds; protect mama’s feet instead!
Starbucks (gift card)
There can never be too many caffeinated gifts given to a mother. That is all.
Snack and Pamper Basket
This is my favorite kind of gift to give to a new mommy. The chance she has to sit and enjoy a good meal is rare, but she has to eat like a cow because she basically is one for the first couple weeks. I am ravenous from the time the baby comes out until about two months later. I’ll eat anything in sight, even if I know it won’t be healthy or make me feel great. So stock your basket with protein and fruit-filled snacks that she doesn’t get to see every day, like granola bars, nut and dried fruit mixes, dark chocolate, gum and mints for in between meals, instant coffee packs (Starbucks’ VIAs are delicious!) and fresh fruit. I also like to include magazines, little lotion bottles, hand sanitizer or body wash to clean off the hospital and breast milk stink for a little while.
Milk Snob Nursing Cover
I hesitated to put this on the list since its treading into the Baby Registry territory a little too much, but last week I watched a mom using of the these and then cuddling her baby to sleep while dozing off herself. It looked cozy and the 3rd trimester hormones took over. I NEED that cover! I’ll enjoy nursing, cuddling my baby, and keeping my back rolls out of public view if I have it! Okay, it might not have the magic effect of turning my distaste for nursing into a fun activity, but at least I can feel less self-conscious. There are lots of brands rolling these things out (even a few DIY tutorials online), but my favorite pattern options are on Milk Snob’s website.